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State-run COVID-19 vaccination site opens at Desert Financial Arena

The indoor site on ASU's Tempe campus replaced Phoenix Municipal Stadium as a COVID-19 vaccine distribution site

Desert Financial Arena

Desert Financial Arena in Tempe is pictured on Monday, April 12, 2021.

A new state COVID-19 vaccination site opened Monday at the Desert Financial Arena in Tempe, according to a University press release.

Due to warming weather, the new indoor site is replacing Phoenix Municipal Stadium as a vaccine distribution location. 

People who have already been scheduled to receive their second dose at Phoenix Municipal Stadium will be informed of the new location for their second-dose appointments.

The Desert Financial Arena vaccination site will be open daily from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. Appointments are required and can be accessed through the Arizona Department of Health Services' website.

The Phoenix Municipal site vaccinated approximately 3,500 people a day, according to the press release. The University said in the press release it hopes to meet or exceed that number at the new Desert Financial Arena site. 

“Arizona State University is now operating and managing four of the state’s seven public points of distribution for the COVID-19 vaccine and we are very happy that university property can be of service to the public for this important community activity,” ASU President Michael Crow said in the press release.

Free parking is available north of the arena and the site is located along the Valley's Metro Light Rail line. 

All ASU students still have access to five state-run vaccination sites: ASU’s Desert Financial Arena, State Farm Stadium, UA in central Tucson and Yuma Civic Center. State Farm stadium's site will transition to an indoor site at nearby Gila River Arena on April 23. 

ASU students can also sign up through their health portal to receive the COVID-19 vaccine at any campus health clinic. 

READ MORE: All ASU students can sign up to receive the Johnson & Johnson vaccine

A contract between ASU and ADHS said the state has paid ASU over $20 million covering COVID-19 vaccine and test sites, according to The Arizona Republic

According to the article, a contract that began as a $12.7 million deal in responding to the COVID-19 pandemic has grown to $90.8 million and is expected to increase by approximately $44 million as the University continues to add vaccination sites, totaling $135 million.

As of April 8, ASU has spent and been paid back $23.6 million of the total contract allowance — approximately one-third of the $90.8 million, according to the article. 

The article said the $90.8 million contract includes maximum reimbursements of about $56.5 million for saliva-testing costs and $34.3 million for vaccine site costs. Infrastructure and staff and operation support are some of the items the University spends the most money on to make the sites run smoothly.  

The contract also specifies the state-operated vaccine sites will close by June 30 and the contract itself expires July 6. State officials said they plan to eventually replace large-scale COVID-19 vaccination sites with "community-based distribution in pharmacies, clinics and primary care doctors' offices," the article said.

On Monday, ASU reported 86 active COVID-19 cases, and the cumulative case count since Aug. 1 now sits at 6,576.

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